Day 5: Grand Canyon and Las Vegas

Today’s main activity was one of the highlights of our trip – a helicopter trip to the Grand Canyon!

We had to get up really early to get the minibus shuttle to Boulder City. The casino wasn’t at all quiet though – there were still people gambling at 7 a.m. I guess they’d been up all night!?

Our helicopter pilot was Chuck who used to fly Black Hawks, but he said he left the Army because he got “tired of getting shot at”. It was such a good line that he used it several times to all of us! It was good to know we were in experienced hands though, as it was my first time in a helicopter.

In the helicopter - I don't look nervous do I?

As part of the flight, we passed by the Hoover dam.

The Hoover Dam

What is there to say about the Grand Canyon, except ‘wow’?

Strangely, it had snowed in the night, giving a slightly surreal look of white tops to the surrounding hills and desert.

Grand Canyon

View from the helicopter

We had time in the Canyon to wander around a bit and get some photos, as well as having a mini lunch. All too soon it was time to be going again. We’ve already been saying we’d love to go back and explore more of the Canyon, including the ’Skywalk’ (a glass platform projected over the lip of the Canyon – we could see it from the landing site).

In the afternoon we took a walk down The Strip. We didn’t get very far – everything’s really far apart. We managed to make it as far as the Bellagio – we wanted to check out the glass sculpture and the conservatory. We didn’t see the fountains unfortunately as we couldn’t find the show times.

Glass sculpture in The Bellagio foyer

In front of The Bellagio

We’re not sure whether Vegas is entirely our scene. We didn’t do any gambling (not even the slots – you had to have some sort of prepay card and we couldn’t be bothered to queue up!) and we didn’t much like the seedy side of it. On the other hand, it’s a great place for people-watching! We loved seeing cowboys at breakfast (in full boots and Stetson).

Our evening: drinks at Salute watching the dueling pianos; dinner at ‘I Heart Burger’; the Treasure Island pirate battle show; and the ‘Mystère‘ performance by Cirque du Soleil. Phew! Cirque du Soleil was fantastic, but no photos allowed unfortunately.

Please see the gallery for more photos! (NB: click on the photos for larger versions/slideshow.)

The date was 5 November 2011. Next day – Day 6: Death Valley.


One thought on “Day 5: Grand Canyon and Las Vegas

  1. Pingback: Day 4: freight train video | Jenny and Tom

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